How to eliminate wild violets from a vegetable garden

Q: My vegetable garden is totally taken over by those wild violets. I keep pulling and they keep growing. Endless job. I am planning to weed and turn over the garden and weed again. I’ve heard that the best time to spray to kill the wild violets is in late fall. My question is if I do spray in the fall — what should I use so that I can plant the vegetables again in the spring. Is it safe to spray weed killer and plant in the spring? Thanks

— Ed Frack

Sue Kittek

MONICA CABRERA / TMC

Sue Kittek

These cute little plants can be a nightmare for both lawn and vegetable/flower garden lovers. The sweet things are very invasive and very difficult to remove. They spread by seed and underground root. Digging, as Ed mentions is tedious and at best, a long-term, perhaps lifetime, job. However, it is

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Reap your rewards as summer crops ripen

The summer crops are starting to come in and I love it. Jack, our neighbor who graciously grows tomatoes in his fenced garden for me, reports there are flowers and fruit aplenty in the tomato patch. A few are almost ready to eat. The roadside farm markets are multiplying—the one here in nearby Coopersburg just opened for the season and I’ve seen a few signs for local produce when I make my almost weekly trip to the Quakertown Farmers Market aka Q-mart). So after all the work you put into your garden so far, be sure to harvest your rewards regularly. While you are out there, check carefully for hornworm caterpillars and hand pick them off the plants. That is, unless their backs are covered with small white eggs, resembling white grains of rice. Leave those caterpillars alone. They are already doomed as when the eggs hatch, the larvae of

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